Dropping Our Oars for God, One Boat At A Time

{{Matthew 4:18-22 & Luke 5:10-11}}

So Jesus is walking along the Sea of Galilee and comes across these 2 fishermen: Peter and Andrew. Jesus tells them to leave their nets and follow Him. From what we can tell this is their first time seeing Jesus. Jesus then tells them they will fish for people… this is their (and our) calling – to create disciples. The Bible says that Peter and Andrew immediately got up and followed Jesus. They later saw two other brothers: Zebedee and John. When Jesus called them, they immediately left their boats and their father to follow.

This is a story that we can all relate to! See, we all have boats in our lives. Our comfort zones… the stuff we think we need in order to be fulfilled and satisfied. The amount of money we make, the city we live in, our friendships, the material “things” we’ve accumulated… take a look at your life. What fills it up? Even the positive aspects can become a net weighing down on us if we allow them to be our driving force or MO as opposed to living a life in pursuit of a deeper relationship with God. I believe that there will be many seasons in each of our lives that we will need to pray and reflect on the following:

1. What are the boats in your life?

2. Are you willing to surrender control over them to God?

3. Are you willing to leave the boats that take you away from a relationship with God?

4. What does “follow Christ” mean to you, and what do you feel the Holy Spirit is trying to teach you?

Jesus didn’t call his disciples to follow Him when it was convenient for them – notice the word immediately. God calls us to lay down our lives for Him. It is a term so often said that maybe it becomes overlooked and you don’t carve out regular time to reflect on it’s meaning for your own life. Does it mean that we need to give up everything we have? For some, maybe it does. But for most of us, I think it means to give up the things that pull us away from a relationship with God. This can also include habits or unhealthy relationships with others.

I wonder how many of us Christ-followers would actually get up and follow Christ if we were called to leave our boat?

I believe that God asks us to leave our comfort zone all the time. Sometimes we ignore it, and other times we simply aren’t listening. In order for God to fulfill all of his promises to us, we have to accept the gifts he has given to us with open hearts. Prayer is a relationship, and a relationship is a two-way street. It’s dynamic. We have to be willing to listen to God’s promptings and be regular in his word and teachings (James 1:22-25 below). Until we pursue this as a lifestyle, we aren’t able to experience the full Glory of God. So, take a look at your life. What boat is God calling you to leave in order to follow Him?


Truth:

James 1:22-25 “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it – not forgetting what they have heart, but doing it – they will be blessed in what they do.”

Matthew 6:19-21 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

Matthew 8:19 “Then a teacher of the law came to him and said, ‘Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.'” (Verses 20-22 further illustrate the importance of following Jesus’s calling before all else)

Matthew 4:18-22 “As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. ‘Come, follow me,’ Jesus said, ‘and I will send you out to fish for people.’ At once they left their nets and followed him. Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them, and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him.

3 comments

  1. I loved this so much! I do feel like Father is calling me out of the boat more and more. Like that song, where feet may fail 🙂 My comfort has been in holding back and not putting myself out there. I have a dream of an online community that is about the heart, living from the heart and living as sons and daughter. A community where we can join together, walk together, grow together. But I have to take steps and do things that scare me. But Father is prodding me along 🙂 Thanks for this!

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